The Solution to Work-Related Injuries

Our people are our most valuable asset here at BB Imaging, and so the ergonomics and work conditions of our employees is a topic that is always on our mind. Many people outside of the industry may not realize it, but all healthcare providers put their body on the line in the clinic on a daily basis. So the question is, how can we put an end to work-related injuries that seem to plague the industry? That crooked wrist position may not be a bother during the first or second scan of the day, but after the sixteenth patient you're putting yourself at risk. That's why we make it our top priority to set up our sonographers for success. Whether that means getting the best in ergonomic scanning technology or simply giving them some time off, we urge our employees to advocate for themselves and their health. Don't be a superhero, know your body and your limits. 

That's why we thought it would be relevant to share this article, "Tackling ergonomic issues in sonography," explaining the hazards of scanning and how we can best prevent work-related injury. Here, contributing writer Susan Murphy gives some sobering statistics on how widespread work-related injuries are in the sonography field. According to Murphy, a shocking 80% of working sonographers scan with pain forcing 20% of them to quit their profession altogether. 

Sound body mechanics are a critical part of the solution in reducing pain and preventing health-related injuries. Murphy suggests that your back should never bend more than 30 degrees, decreasing the load on the back and shoulders. Neutral body positions such a this should be the goal with any body movement during a scan, as this will in turn increase precision and accuracy.

The other half of the solution comes down to the equipment and environment. Body mechanics can only do so much if the equipment is clunky and outdated. Adjustable patient beds are a must along with chairs and support cushions. Murphy compares the costs of ergonomic equipment to ensure sonographer health to the healthcare costs of work-related injuries. What she finds is that the healthcare costs of work-related injuries are $1,370,020 more expensive than the cost of ergonomic equipment. So there really is no excuse not to provide the best possible environment for the sonographer. 

To us, the answer is clear. The only way to solve the problem of work-related injuries is to put an emphasis on prevention. Be pro-active, not reactive. Ensure that proper technique is practiced in tandem with proper equipment. To learn more about the implications of ergonomics in sonography and how to best prevent work-related injury, be sure to read the full article: "Tackling ergonomic issues in sonography."